Brazil has embraced the use of long-distance slurry pipelines to transport millions of tonnes of solid materials since the 1970s, with some of the original pipelines still in operation today. In fact, of the more than 10,000 km of active long-distance slurry pipelines around the world, 2,500 km are located in Brazil.

Over four decades, we have been working with our clients to develop transport solutions for a diverse array of mineral products. These pipelines allow products to be transported safely and economically through challenging terrain, extreme climates and from remote locations.

When designing a pipeline solution, we consider a myriad of factors such as: minimizing the impact on the environment and community, geotechnical conditions and geohazards (e.g., seismicity, landslides etc.), safety, project schedule, the correct ore or concentrate characterization and, of course, the economics.

Why ‘know-how’ matters

Having the skills to effectively study, design and engineer a pipeline can make a huge difference to the outcome and cost of a project. Often, we are able to propose cost-effective solutions that make transportation via pipeline the best, and sometimes our client’s only, viable transport option.

For example, in a recent study we proposed a centrifugal pump rather than a positive displacement pump to move the slurry over long distance, resulting in a significant cost reduction and savings. On another project, when reviewing ways to reduce the CAPEX, our experts proposed increasing the pipe diameter and reducing the number of pumps from four to a single positive displacement pump. This improved the system operation and efficiency.

Finding a better way

Having been involved in the study, design, and implementation of 80% of all long-distance slurry pipelines installed worldwide, we are here to help add value and support your return on investment. Our pipeline experts throughout our global offices, consult with one another to develop the most appropriate, value-added solutions for our clients’ biggest challenges.

Using our customized software packages (Pipeline Simulator™ and Pipeline Advisor™) we can train pipeline operators and help our clients operate, control and optimise their pipeline systems safely.

Brazil pipeline team

Our pipeline team has been involved in 100% of the long-distance slurry pipeline projects in Brazil and our rheology lab in Belo Horizonte office has analysed 1000s of slurry samples to provide the slurry characteristics crucial to successful pipeline projects. We use this data to support pipeline design, equipment selection and specifications, operating and maintenance instructions, and cost savings.

In addition to our lab in Belo Horizonte, we have labs in Santiago (Chile) and Lima (Peru) where we have the resources to conduct a spectrum of tests to help you save time and money.

Let us help you with your pipeline project. From concept to commissioning, training and operational support and integrity services, we are here to help you #FindABetterWay.

For more information, contact Jay Chapman.